I’m starting to believe in it.
The Paris metropolitan area has 4 different suburban train lines that go from zones 1 (Paris ‘proper’ if you will) through 5. I live in the dreaded, far-away zone 5. Rent is cheaper out here, but it also means you’ve got to pay quite a bit for the transports. I have friends who live here who only pay for zones 1 and 2 because the controllers so rarely come out this far to check tickets, and it makes me feel like a bit of a chump at times. WELP, would you imagine…when I was charging my card this month I stared hard at the machine and thought about how I’d never been checked in zones 3-5, and it was just so tempting to cheat. However, I’m on the train a LOT – I go to Paris nearly every single day for babysitting or the other zillions of things there are to do in Paris, and I can’t imagine spending all that time on the train knowing that I could be caught and fined. The RER is bad enough; if I’m ill at ease every time I’m on it, it will just be hell. Plus I just believe in paying for public transports because I know what life is like without them and I want to support their upkeep and use. EN PLUS, I bitch about the RER constantly (because it stinks, it’s always delayed, it’s always full of people, it’s filthy, etc etc etc), and if I didn’t pay for it, I wouldn’t have a right to complain because I’d just be taking advantage. I certainly don’t want to lose my right to complain.
Well as I stood there staring at the machine contemplating the 45 Euro discount of cheaters, I realized that, though I don’t have any strong disapproval of it (it is but a small, victimless crime), I can’t do that. I have to pay for it. I’m not a rule-breaker; I’m just not that cool. So I sighed and pressed zones 1-5.
Whaaaat did my eyes behold? 50% discount this month because of all the delays and problems that have taken place over the past couple of months on my area of the line. I paid less than I would have for zones 1 and 2 alone. EN PLUS, I was checked in zone 3 just a few days later. Loads of people had little ticket stubs filled out, whereas this uncool granny handed over her charged pass for verification and continued with her book worry-free.
And it continues! I woke up feeling really crappy today…I couldn’t fall asleep until around 4 am and have been a bit sick lately, and today it was even worse. The French are big on spoiling yourself at the first sign of any illness, so I was super tempted to call in sick, at least for the morning classes. I debated it with myself up until the last minute and then decided I really didn’t want to let my teacher down because I knew it would probably mess up her lesson plans, and she even just told me the other day that the main office was doing checks of everyone’s attendance and she assured them that I’m always there and always do my work. So, sigh, I went. Faked a bright face for my first two classes and by the third, I was really running out of steam. I was there, though, waiting in the hallway with my students. But what what? Why were we waiting? The teacher was absent! We were all free to go! And now I’m enjoying a 2-hour break at home with some tea.
Two weeks into the month and I’ve been rewarded twice for being an honest, responsible person. Karma’s not always a bitch; sometimes she’s a right peach. I think it’s going to be a good spring.
near République, 8 mai 2011